David de Rothschild, adventurer
Beasts of No Nation, by Uzodinma Iweala (2005)
An inspiring novel about a child soldier in West Africa. The book's power to show the resilience of the human spirit and a determination to survive against all the odds is without equal.
Mike Fay, conservationist
The Last Place on Earth, by Michael (Nick) Nichols and Mike Fay (2005)
That's easy for me—not because I'm one of the authors but because it represents a sustained push over 15 years by two friends—a photographer and a conservationist—that resulted in the creation of some 17 national parks in Congo forests totaling more than ten million acres. We did it by showing everyone the wonders of those forests. Nick's photos will go down in history as the best wildlife photography of the century, flat out.
Will Gadd, adventurer
Touching the Void: The True Story of One Man's Miraculous Survival, by Joe Simpson (1989)
It's one of those books every climber has read or should read—it's a hell of a story.
Colin Angus, adventurer
Ultimate High: My Everest Odyssey, by Göran Kropp (1999)
In an era when summiting Everest has become ho-hum, Ultimate High—which details Swedish adventurer Göran Kropp's incredible unsupported bicycle ride from Sweden to Everest and back, and his summit without oxygen—puts the sparkle back into the ultimate climb. Göran's amicable way, unfettered ambition, and passion for adventure leap from the pages.